Halloween in Twenty Seventeen
There’s an interesting correlation between the rise of social media and adult Halloween parties, as we transgress towards our impending dystopian future. A sort of hijack of what used to be a fun day for the kids. We’ll take Halloween, you keep Christmas. I imagine parents spending less time on their children’s costumes now and more time on their own. Sorry did I say time? Or is it money. It’s both. Find old white sheet, cut two holes in said sheet. There kiddo, you’re a ghost, says the elaborately dressed mama standing in her Red Queen gown, bright red wig, and is that an actual golden crown?
I’ve also noticed how Halloween adult costumes are most often based on Hollywood movie characters. And not just horror films, although I expect to see a lot of Pennywise clowns from IT walking about this year! Suck it, coulrophrobes. Superheroes and their villains, Disney and video game characters all scream, I wish I was still a kid, much more effectively than skeletons and witches.
This year, I expect to see more than a few Wonder Women, after Gal Gardot absolutely killed it in that role. And maybe a few Princess Ahmanet’s from the Mummy, played by the beautiful Sofia Boutella, who you might remember from Kingsman. I’m also looking forward to see college girl groups dressed like the gang from last year’s terrifying The Purge: Election Year. Ah, college. Not much has changed there. The classic, is it a bikini or lingerie debate. Neither, it’s from a sex shop. #thatescalatedquickly
So we all have that friend who absolutely kills it with their Halloween costume every year right? Morphing into their character with ingenuity and panache second to none. My friend in particular not only wins Halloween every year, she’s also a rock-climbing, sky-diving, gun-shooting, wave-surfing, shark-swimming, bodalicious badass babe who lives in Hawaii.
I know, hard to believe she’s real but I can confirm that I’ve pinched her and yup, not a figment of my imagination. She’s blown me away with all her costumes over the years, and has kindly allowed me to share a few of them below! She mostly does couples costumes too, although for some reason I think you won’t mind if we just focus on hers for a minute. I can’t wait to see what she does this year…
…Then it’s not a Halloween Costume
First things first, party people. There are a few guidelines we should discuss regarding what constitutes a Halloween costume. Zombies, vampires, cops and robbers, witches, sexy dead or undead, monsters, serial killers, murderous doctors, dentists, nurses, horror movie icons, villains, skeletons, deadly aliens, priests or nuns, asylum dwellers, devils, demons, mummies, and ghosts… are all ok!
If your costume doesn’t relate to any of these, then it’s not a Halloween costume, it’s just a costume! There is nothing scary about dressing up as eggs and bacon, happy looking minions, pretty and unbloodied Jasmines, unicorns, or mermaids. And can somebody please tell me what the fuck is scary about Olivia Newton-John or John Travolta from Grease?! I’m sorry, but someones gotta draw the line.
A general rule of thumb is that your character, at the very least, should either be dead or deadly. Halloween, after all, is about remembering the dead. And everything about the dead and dying that creeps us out. The things that go bump in the night. That make you spit out your pumpkin spiced latte and double-check that the doors are locked.
Miss Portmanteau’s Top 10 Halloween Couples Costumes
1. Hugh Hefner and his Playboy bunnies
Finally, a costume for every granddad and granddaughter duo. Too soon? I’m placing my bet that we’re going to see a lot of dead Hefner’s this Halloween. I had a look, and his silky red robe is sold out nearly everywhere! Whoever shows up at the party with the most bunnies wins.
2. Wednesday and Pugsley Addams
I’m a little Addams Family obsessed, truth be told. I happen to be a Wednesday child myself, full of woe. So when choosing between Morticia or Wednesday, the choice was obvious. I had this dodgy, college-girl-looking outfit picked out before I started dating George. We had just gotten together and so I suggested he be Pugsley. The contact lenses was his, rather brilliant idea. I’m not sure what was creepier, that we chose a sibling costume, that we actually look a lot like siblings, or that we told people we were half-siblings and then made out in front them. #couplegoals
3. Poison Ivy and Batman
Batman is one of the most popular superheroes for Halloween. Like James Bond, he yields no special superhuman powers except the power of infinite privilege, money and incredibly cool stuff. Rather than live the life of a Dan Bilzerian, Batman is a tortured, reclusive man with a long list of archenemies. Of all his foes, his female nemesis Poison Ivy stands out for a few reasons.
In contrast to the steady flow of Batman’s over the years, Poison Ivy only ever made one Hollywood film appearance in the 1997 film Batman & Robin. Critics hated the movie so much they accused it of killing Batman until 2005. Hate it or love it, Uma Thurman’s performance was so memorable she’s still inspiring Halloween costumes 20 years on. That’s me and George on the left.
4. Harley Quinn and the Joker
Suicide Squad grossed 745 million dollars worldwide in 2016, while Margot Robbie’s performance as Harley Quinn grossed millions more in wet dreams… Suicide Squad was one of the biggest movie releases of 2016 and one of the most popular Halloween costumes last year. The Joker of course has been played by many big names including Jack Nicholson, Heath Ledger and most recently Jared Leto. Just try not to take the role too seriously. Rumour has it that a sequel is in the works that could star Harley’s BFF Poison Ivy!
5. Alice and the Mad Hatter
Alice in Wonderland is the one exception I’ll make when it comes to dressing up as non-violent, undead characters for Halloween. The reason is that the world of Halloween is not too dissimilar from Alice’s rabbit hole. Although a children’s tale, the story is much darker than it may at first seem, depending on your interpretation. There have been many, quite different versions of this tale in Hollywood, where Alice is sometimes, and sometimes not, the love interest of the Mad Hatter. The story is chock-full of characters to choose from, as nearly all make for great Halloween costumes!
6. Khal Drogo and Khaleesi
With #metoo trending as I write this, Jason Momoa had to apologise recently for saying how he loves sci-fi and fantasy, since you get to slice off tongues and rape beautiful women. He was joking of course, and while people picked on his rape comment, nobody stood up for all the people out there who’ve lost a tongue. And nobody should. He was talking about sci-fi and fantasy, not real life. And in this little blog post of mine, we’re talking about Halloween. Despite their Harvey Weinstein-esque start, Khal Drogo and Khaleesi eventually fall in love in Game of Thrones, an outcome that again reminds us that it’s just a story and not real life. If you happen to be dating a buff giant or have a significant height difference, you’ll probably pull off this costume better than the couple on the far-right. Sorry couple on the far-right, good effort though.
7. Lana and Archer
Who? Lana and Archer! From Archer! Ahhh there are just too many people missing out on this one. Speaking of political incorrectness, Archer is an extremely provocative character in this respect. I dare not elaborate, but if political incorrectness is your idea of funny, you will ROFL hard at this show. He and Lana work as extremely deadly undercover agents for, well, Archer’s mother. The cartoon has it’s ups and downs in terms of laughs a minute, but it’s a standout achievement in comedy. My Hawaii-based girl crush did a wicked Lana last year, and kudos to her husband, who we will briefly acknowledge before we carry on pretending he does not exist. #girlcrush
8. Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf
Although only half of this couple qualifies as dead or deadly, nothing that a bit of fake blood won’t fix! If your other half has been a bad boy this year, convince him that this is the best costume idea ever, and watch him sweat and squeal under his warm suffocating wolf mask while you look pretty as a picture #revengeisabitch. You could do that, OR, if you have a male friend that’s this good at makeup, just leave your boyfriend at home.
9. Frankenstein and his Bride
This is definitely the most Halloweenie of my picks. Frankenstein and his bride is a brilliant classic from the 1930s written by Mary Shelley. The main costume elements are the conical black wig with white lightning streaks on either side, white clothes, a bald companion in black clothes, and a lot of makeup.
10. Neo and Trinity
Let us not forget that the Matrix was a revolutionary movie that had each and every one of us bending over backwards in slow motion to mimic that famous slo-mo bullet scene. I still get a little excited when I see someone sporting a Matrix full-length leather coat in public just because. #goth #emo #sexpervert. These outfits are easy and mega cool, obvs. But wouldn’t it be sick, like really, really sick, if you could convince like 10 of your friends to dress up as the black-suited Agents, and show up at a party as Neo and Trinity with a gang of black-suits in tow?!?! Just remember, the blue pill takes you home.
Bonus! Scorpion and Kitana
Mortal Kombat is one of the most successful fighting franchises in the history of video games. It’s had a TV series and two movies, with a reboot rumoured for years. Some are saying a 2018 release? Princess Kitana and Scorpion are two of the most famous characters from the franchise and a really awesome costume duo for all the ninja warriors out there. Scorpion is yellow, Sub-Zero is blue.
Photo Credits: Feature Image Photo by Valeria Boltneva from Pexels. Costume images from Pinterest, myself and my awesome friend.